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Download Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Better: A Surgeons Notes on Performance (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Atul Gawande
4.09 out of 54.09 out of 54.09 out of 54.09 out of 54.09 out of 5 4.09 (35 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Atul Gawande Narrator: John Bedford Lloyd Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2007 ISBN:
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The struggle to perform well is universal: each one of us faces fatigue, limited resources, and imperfect abilities in whatever we do. But nowhere is this drive to do better more important than in medicine, where lives are on the line with every decision. In his new audiobook, Atul Gawande explores how doctors strive to close the gap between best intentions and best performance in the face of obstacles that sometimes seem insurmountable.

Gawande's gripping stories of diligence, ingenuity, and what it means to do right by people take us to battlefield surgical tents in Iraq, to labor and delivery rooms in Boston, to a polio outbreak in India, and to malpractice courtrooms around the country. He discusses the ethical dilemmas of doctors' participation in lethal injections, examines the influence of money on modern medicine, and recounts the astoundingly contentious history of hand washing.

And as in all his writing, Gawande gives us an inside look at his own life as a practicing surgeon, offering a searingly honest firsthand account of work in a field where mistakes are both unavoidable and unthinkable. At once unflinching and compassionate, Better is an exhilarating journey narrated by arguably the best nonfiction doctor-writer around. Gawande's investigation into medical professionals and how they progress from merely good to great provides rare insight into the elements of success, illuminating every area of human endeavor.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 AGC | 2/13/2014

    " It's very humbling to know that even the best of the best need to continue to improve their skills and mindset to meet the ever-changing society that we live in. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Erica | 1/8/2014

    " eye-opening. gawande writes about a lot of gray areas in medicine that i hadn't thought about before. i appreciate how he's upfront about his own beliefs but acknowledges that there're alternative views. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Anca Segall | 1/5/2014

    " I really enjoyed these essays. Also, I recommend the one on hand-washing to every Microbiology class I teach. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bobby | 1/4/2014

    " Another excellent book by Atul Gawande. I can't think of any other medical writer who comes even close to him when it comes to both recognizing and articulating the challenges faced by the profession of medicine. One of the biggest strengths of Dr Gawande's writing is that although he often gives data/evidence and mentions relevant studies/experts, he is also quick to point out the limitations of such data when it comes to the inherent uncertainty of medical decision making. Like his other works, this should be required reading for all medical students, residents, and even fully trained physicians. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eliza | 12/24/2013

    " Fascinating case studies and explorations of the medical profession and how it can become better at what it does. I really enjoyed Gawande's accessible writing and was struck by his simple, but profound insights into the small changes in practice that can make a huge difference in the success of medical care. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maureen | 12/23/2013

    " I liked this much more than I thought I would...sensitive yet clear-eyed look at the world of medicine from a surgeon's point of view. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 N. O'mara | 12/21/2013

    " I found these thoughtful essays exploring what it takes to be not just 'good' at what one does but 'better' to be insightful and inspiring. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Staci | 12/19/2013

    " Definitely liked "Complications" a little bit better because this book started out a bit slower. I will say in his last several chapters I thought it picked up quite a bit and ended really well. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tim Sharma | 12/19/2013

    " I'v e just started, but very well written, and very insightful. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Polly | 12/16/2013

    " This is Gwande's second book, and I did not like it as much as the first one because he spends too much time on some issues which I was not all that interested in. Still I think it is worth reading, and there are not as many personal stories as there are in Complicaitons. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tonya | 12/13/2013

    " I would probably give this a 3 1/2 stars. I have heard alot of the information/research he cites, but it was thought provoking. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maura | 11/24/2013

    " Very well written and insightful. You don't have to be in the medical profession to get learn something from Gawande's stories. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cecilie Lee | 8/27/2013

    " He has such a great way of writing. I love his work. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Natalie | 6/8/2013

    " I think I liked this book a little "better" than complications. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cyndi Rachal | 6/4/2013

    " This is a good read for anyone in the medical field. It is also good for people who aren't. It gives an inside look on some of the things we have to deal with on a daily basis in medicine and shows that there is always room for improvement. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Magdalena Zdziebko | 5/18/2013

    " reading the cover I was full of curiosity, it supposed to be one of the best medical books but appeared to be just as usual as other ones... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shankar LeVine | 2/9/2013

    " This is the second of atul gawande's compilations of essays of medicine. This one is just as good as Complications. He is a phenomenal writer. Essays are clear, well researched, engaging, to the point, thought-provoking and real eye openers into different aspects of the world of medicina "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Briana | 11/3/2012

    " A must-read for all premeds and anyone interested in the field of medicine. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sheri | 8/13/2012

    " I really enjoyed this book and read it quickly over the course of the weekend. His stories about advances in obstetrics, basic hygiene in hospitals, health care in India are fascinating. A great book and he has a nice writing style. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Austin | 7/14/2012

    " The epilogue is maybe the best advice I've ever seen on how to approach med school. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Abdulaziz | 7/11/2012

    " Atul is a magnificent writer ,, you can feel that he really cares about what he is writing about ,, so inspiring ,, a must read for all surgeons ,, the chapter about Polio vaccination campaign and the one with infection control/hand washing is simply amazing ,, you cant stop reading "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eve | 4/27/2012

    " I really like Atul Gawande. I enjoyed "Complications" more, but this one is good too if you like medical writing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bela | 4/1/2012

    " learned a lot about the medical system in America. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sesh | 12/25/2011

    " A well thought out analysis of what defines a "positive deviant" doctor and a must read for anyone in or connected with the medical profession. With that said, Gawande's descriptions can be a bit drab and the book drags at points. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Datchuk | 6/25/2011

    " Visceral take on improving performance in medicine "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Austyn | 6/23/2011

    " Picked this book up at my mom's cause I was bored and read it in 2 days, pretty interesting studies about the medical world. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leigh | 6/23/2011

    " I loved this book. Makes you think and very informative without being boring or full of doctor talk that is over your head. Very readable. I REALLY enjoyed it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Merle | 6/8/2011

    " Great book! Very intriguing and enlightening. The principles in this book apply to more than the medical field. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amy | 6/1/2011

    " I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Gawande writes using minimal jargon, so that I understand what he is talking about, yet still feel as though I am learning a lot about the medical profession. He also presents both sides of each issue, although he definitely lets his own bias be known. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Steve | 5/21/2011

    " While Gawande stays clearly in the domain of medicine, there are lessons in this book to be learned by those working in any craft that combines technology, personal skill, and human interaction. Better is a good read for anyone seeking to understand performance. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Smehta | 5/19/2011

    " More of my new favorite author.
    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sholeen | 5/15/2011

    " Really enjoy his books, they are motivating "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 5/4/2011

    " Props to Jessica for giving me this for my bday - it's right up my alley. I felt kind of proud that he makes health care policy sound so interesting - and doable - and I hope a lot of people read this. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 5/4/2011

    " Not as good as Complications but he's a warm, insightful writer and his stories and thoughts are fascinating. I did skip some stuff, though, unlike Complications. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jasmine | 4/29/2011

    " Good read, found the death penalty chapter especially interesting. Still prefer Complications though, maybe because I can relate to that on a personal level. "

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About the Author
Author Atul Gawande


Atul Gawande is author of three bestselling books: Complications, a finalist for the National Book Award; Better, selected by Amazon.com as one of the ten best books of 2007; and The Checklist Manifesto. His latest book is Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. He is also a surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, a staff writer for The New Yorker, and a professor at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health. He has won the Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing about Science, a MacArthur Fellowship, and two National Magazine Awards. In his work in public health, he is Executive Director of Ariadne Labs, a joint center for health systems innovation, and chairman of Lifebox, a nonprofit organization making surgery safer globally. He and his wife have three children and live in Newton, Massachusetts.

About the Narrator

John Bedford Lloyd, a graduate of the Yale School of Drama, has appeared in many major motion pictures, including The Bourne Supremacy, Crossing Delancey, The Abyss, The Manchurian Candidate, and Philadelphia. His television credits include Suits, Pan Am, Law & Order, Spin City, and The West Wing. A critically acclaimed audiobook narrator and winner of the Edgar Allen Poe Award, his voice work includes reading for such authors as Michael Crichton, Nicholas Sparks, Paul Doiron, and Atul Gawande, among others.